5 people face charges after 2 separate chases with police

SAPD still looking for 2 people who got away

SAN ANTONIO – Five people face criminal charges of evading arrest in connection with two separate chases involving San Antonio police.

The chases happened within a four-hour period from Sunday night into Monday morning.

Police said both involved passengers in vehicles reportedly shooting at other people.

The first chase began shortly before 8:30 p.m. on Sunday after police received a call from someone in a vehicle on Loop 410 who told them a passenger in an SUV had fired shots has his car.

Officers responded and located an SUV matching that description on the highway near Bandera Road.

"The driver was doing a lot of back and forth, going east and west," said Sgt. Arthur Casas, with SAPD's traffic division.

Casas said the vehicle finally came to a stop after it hit a tree. Two men who were inside that SUV climbed out and tried to run away, but they were caught a short time later.

Casas said officers arrested both of them as well as a woman who remained behind in the SUV.

Another driver, Rolando Salazar, said he was driving on Loop 410 when he unintentionally got caught up in the chaos, and the suspect's vehicle rear-ended his SUV.

"I look back in the rearview mirror and I see a car right on our tail. And I see a whole bunch of police lights right behind them," Salazar said. "It's kind of scary, and exciting at the same time, that (we) were a part of something like this," he said. "But, you know, I have my kids in the car, too, so the only thing I wish (is that) they weren't there."

Salazar said he and his family escaped injury. Their SUV, however, was left with a sizable dent in its bumper.

In a separate chase just after midnight, police said they caught up with two of the four people involved.

They arrested Erik Guajardo, 20, and Brandon Harris, 21. Two other men got away, police said.

A preliminary police report states that the chase began after an officer who was handling a separate call heard gunshots coming from the 100 block of Buford Alley.

The officer then noticed a Jeep speeding away from the area and gave chase. The vehicle came to a stop about ten miles away, at Sunrise Bend and Sunrise Creek, where the four people mentioned above jumped out and tried to run.

Police said in addition to the two arrests they made, they recovered weapons and ammunition that were tossed out of the vehicle.

Back on Buford Alley, meanwhile, officers found Fernando Mendoza, 18, outside a home, suffering from a gunshot wound to his leg. He was taken to a hospital for treatment and later released, police said.

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